If the Kensington Quarters’ Instagram feed is any indication, we’re getting very close to experiencing meaty, pasture-raised goodness at the much anticipated butcher counter, bar, and restaurant opening tomorrow in Fishtown.
For many, the event that introduced butcher Bryan Mayer to Philadelphia was Wyebrook Farm’s first La Tuade du Cochon–an opportunity for bacon lovers to confront their crimes and their passions, and one that the farm is reprising this year, on November 16. The event will be a start to finish hoof-to-table dining experience. That’s right, a heritage hog, slaughtered, bled, scalded, and butchered (as professionally and respectfully as possible), and then memorialized in a meal by chef Andrew Wood of Russet.
There are a few spots remaining for this year’s event. Class and dinner are $125 per person (includes tax and gratuity). Secure your place at the table by e-mailing: firstname.lastname@example.org. And, in the meantime, we have the menu.
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Making Pasta at Russet.
Chef Andrew Wood of Russet is hosting a series of pasta-making classes for up to 25 guests on one Monday each month (starting this evening). Guests are taught how to make dough (Chef Wood grinds his own flour for this and all pasta at Russet) and roll a variety of pasta shapes. Sounds like a good time, but the real positive in going to such a class is in eating the pasta.
So, afterwards, the Chef will take all of the pasta made by the class and cook a dinner for the group, which includes house-cured charcuterie, salads, antipasti and the pasta as the main course. Pie, cake or tart will be for dessert.
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Paleo enthusiasts grab your forks and steak knives because this one is for you.
Andrew and Kristin Wood, chefs and owners of Russet invite you for one hearty summer cookout on the restaurant’s back patio. Wednesday, July 23rd the fire will be blazing and the chefs will be cooking their haul from Philly CowShare. The grass-fed beef and pasture-raised pork will be served over four courses, using only things our cave man ancestors would eat. But we’re guessing the way the Wood’s are serving these ingredients will be a little more delectable and artful than our ancient counterparts. The dinner starts at 5:30 p.m and is $35 per person. The event will also be BYOB and reservations are recommended. Check out the full menu below, to get your appetite going.
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On Tuesday, August 6th, Russet is hosting a special dinner that will only use produce harvested the day before from Heritage Farm, a three-acre farm near City Avenue.
The dinner is $45 per person and the restaurant is BYOB. Helping Andrew Wood in the local produce dinner is Jack Goldenberg, the man behind Hood Rich Farms.
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Craig LaBan sees the potential in Andrew Wood’s Russet to be one of Philadelphia’s best restaurants. But before that happens some loose ends around the entrees will have to be taken care of. But the appetizers, well they’re already excellent.
Housemade lonza, chile-cured from the loin of Tamworth pigs Russet buys whole from Lancaster County, comes sliced into a translucent amber rosette draped with pickled ramps, blanched celery leaves, and a rustic green oil with mortar-crushed herbs. Stinging nettles, plucked for the restaurant by urban forager David Siller, are spun into silky strands of forest green tagliolini, glazed with the capery anchovy piquance of bagna cauda, and then set beneath a lightly broiled yolk that bursts into sauce at first touch.
Two Bells – Very Good
Russet [Philadelphia Inquirer]
Russet [Official Site]
Trey Popp visits Russet, the new BYOB from Andrew and Kristen Woods.
The Woods’ seasonable-and-sustainable credo is familiar, but their Old World sensibility gives Russet a traditionalist rather than trendy vibe. He makes pastas from Lancaster wheat, rolling out some shapes on a chitarra crafted by an old artisan in Chester County. She makes a butterscotched, Calvados-creamed apple mille-feuille that’s to die for.
Two-and-a-half Stars (Good to Excellent)
Philadelphia Restaurant Review: Old World Sensibilities at Russet [Philadelphia magazine]
Russet [Official Site]
Andrew and Kristin Wood have opened Russet at 1521 Spruce Street. The legitimate farm to table BYOB will offer an ever changing menu with a focus on whole-animal butchery and traditional cooking methods.
Owners Andrew and Kristin Wood
- Andrew and Kristin met in 2000 while working at Radius in Boston
- They traveled west to Chicao where Andrew worked at Rick Tramonto’s TRU and Kristin at Trio under Chef Grant Achatz.
- The couple continued west to California. At Napa’s Terra and San Francisco’s Quince Andrew really got into food-sourcing and seasonality
- Back in Philadelphia Andrew opened James and Maia
- Kristin was also the pastry chef at James
- Most recently Andrew has been at Fork where his charcuterie won a Best of Philly award
Russet, like the apples
Russet will be the name of Andrew and Kristin Wood’s Spruce Street BYOB. The couple is taking over the former Ernesto’s for a true farm-to-table restaurant, not just a spot cashing in on a buzz phrase.
Andrew, who’s first Philadelphia restaurant job was in Georges Perrier’s Le Bec-Fin more than a decade a go, has traveled west to California (with stops in Boston and Chicago) as he has become a disciple of ingredient-driven cuisine. In California, Andrew worked as a sous chef at Hiro Sone and Lissa Doumani’s Terra in the Napa Valley. After that he went to Michael and Lindsay Tusk’s Quince in San Francisco. Quince’s philosophy serves as the backbone of Russet, daily changing menus and food supplied directly from farmers.
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